A new street gang has emerged in Melbourne, and police have been warned that they might be at risk.
The threat of Apex has been chronicled on A Current Affair before, but now they have company in the form of a group of youths labelling themselves “Menace To Society”.
The surge in street violence and vandalism has sent shockwaves right to the top with MPs from both sides of politics pleading with Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull to take urgent action to try to fix the youth crime crisis.
However, Mr Turnbull blamed Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews, saying the state police force had the capacity to contain the street violence but lacked “political leadership”.
It is believed MTS members were involved in a recent rampage in Werribee, in Melbourne’s west.
Dozens of gate-crashers stormed a house party, brandishing garden stakes as weapons and pelting responding riot police with rocks.
Graffiti tags at the trashed AirBnB home read “MTS” and “Apex”.
However, Victorian Police Minister Lisa Neville said there was “no intelligence” to suggest that “Menace To Society” was a gang.
“They’ve written that down, I think they’d like to be a gang,” she said.
“They’re wannabees, and I don’t want to give them any notoriety about this.”
However, western Melbourne resident Sophie said gang activity in her area had worsened in recent months.
“I take my dogs out at night and you hear the noise coming from the park,” she said.
“The yelling, the screaming – at one stage I could hear the smashing of bottles.”
Police have also been warned about the risks to themselves.
In one recent incident, police trailed a vehicle in Tarneit being driven by a boy as young as 13.
As the vehicle approached a laneway, a group of up to 40 African youths surrounded the car.
Police believe this was a deliberate ploy to lure officers into the laneway – with no escape or exit paths.
State Shadow Attorney General John Pesutto said it was time to “get tough” on gang activity.
Jafri Katagar, a member of Melbourne’s Sudanese community, said parents were “powerless”.
“The criminal activities they’re doing, it does have an impact on the wider African community because you find the whole African community is being labelled as violent,” he said.
© Nine Digital Pty Ltd 2018